Seeting sun seen through a yoga hand mudra
Dr. Elson Haas
written by
Dr. Elson Haas

Sep 14, 2022

Article Tags: stress reduction | health education | integrative medicine | Meditation


In the system of Traditional Chinese Medicine that I wrote about in Staying Healthy with the Seasons, the Earth Element’s place is at the center and learning how to center ourselves is a most valuable skill – a way of staying grounded, or being in contact with the Earth in the midst of change and potential chaos. Here is an exercise I use.

Diagram of a three dimensional cross 

Picture this center as a place within you that is the meeting point of a three-dimensional cross.

The horizontal line extends left and right, connecting your two sides. This reflects the integration of the functions of the left and right brain hemispheres. Being centered involves an awareness of both the left brain’s linear, sequential, logical, time-oriented and verbal functions, and the right brain’s timeless, intuitive images existing in space.

Next, the vertical line of above/below is your mind and body. The mind contains your thinking and the body is your senses. Yet to experience your senses, information must be communicated to your brain. The mind and body can easily battle. The mind has the power to override the body to a certain extent, only to have the body express itself possibly in anger throughout its various parts, resulting in dis-ease. The balancing of these two poles is key to long-term health.

The third line of your three-dimensional cross runs from inside to outside – in the center is you. The outer world, the environment of nature and other people, and the inner world of senses, feelings, thoughts, and inner voices must continually communicate.

Through our center we integrate these three worlds.

You can use different places within your body as the location of this center. Some people use the point between the eyes, others the heart, and then the place just below the navel that is the bodies center of gravity. Experiment and find out what works for you.

I have created an audio version of this meditation – HERE